How the smart home and home office are evolving

Over the past year, home security has become more important than ever, especially as more businesses embrace hybrid working and millions make working from home part of the new normal. In fact, ADT saw a 78% increase in the number of DIY security cameras sold in 2021, compared to 2020.

About the author

Mark Reimer is VP, Product Engineering at ADT. He serves as ADT’s representative in the Connectivity Standards Alliance and on the Matter Work Group. Mark is a member of the ADT Consumer Privacy Taskforce and develops consumer privacy policy and industry guidelines to enhance customer-focused privacy within ADT and the industry at large.

With the changing workplace dynamic and limited social engagements, we are spending more time at home and it’s important to develop plans to help keep our families safe. Whether you are one of the millions of employees that are working remotely or a self-employed business owner, it’s important to ensure that you have the right home security set up.

Smart home technology can increase safety and security at home, but do you know how to use it to its full potential?

  • Also check out our roundup of the best smart locks

(Image credit: iStock)

Home management

There are thousands of options on how to integrate intelligent features into your home to improve your work from home environment and stay connected and aware of what is happening if you work outside the home. For example, the right smart home tech can help you keep an eye on all members of the family while you are busy at work. Consumers can easily use their smart home mobile app to access cameras to check on kids or pets who may be playing outside or in another room in the house. When kids are finished with their schoolwork, you can remotely turn on their favorite television program via the smart TV while you wrap up your day or turn off the Wi-Fi when they have had their fill of screen time.

  • We’ve built a list of the best home security cameras available

Staying connected while connected

The past few years have meant more and more time spent on virtual calls. Devices like Google Home in each room allow users to quickly communicate with family members throughout the house even while on a Zoom call. You can quickly mute yourself on the call and broadcast a message over the device to other areas of the house, whether you are telling them when you’ll be off the call or even setting reminders that the kids should get ready for soccer practice so you can leave quickly once you sign off.

Camera devices can also help you monitor for packages and even accept deliveries while you are working. You can check for the mailman and open the garage remotely allowing them to place the package inside and close the door behind them, so you know that your mail is secure. It never hurts to be able to check on your front porch or driveway quickly and conveniently from your mobile phone.

  • These are the best smart home devices on the market today

What’s next

The right smart home automation can not only identify a problem but also take action to remedy it, ensuring your safety and home’s security. In the future, this will look like predictive security. Smart home systems will be able to learn about how the users are operating and adjust accordingly. For example, the lights in different parts of the house may turn on at the same time each day based on when your family enters specific rooms. Or outdoor cameras might see a mailman and know to open the garage door to accept a package.

(Image credit: Andrey Popov / Shutterstock)

Assessing options

The most important thing that consumers can do when thinking about incorporating smart security into their home is ensuring that they have a system that works for their needs. Here are five additional considerations when creating the safest and smartest home security, not only for your family’s safety but also for your at-home workspace.

Set up a system that works for you

Home security is evolving and there are now many different options when it comes to a smart home security set up. Many customers use the “do it for me” approach where smart home security technicians come and fully install the system for you. The technicians can walk you through all aspects of your security system and the best use cases for each product you are setting up. Another method that has gained in popularity recently is “do it yourself.” As consumers have become more familiar with using smart technology, many people are opting to set up their systems themselves with individual products that they choose. Whether you have a professional installation or do it yourself, it’s important to make sure that the system creates a secure home that works for you. Another aspect to look at is professional monitoring services where experienced professionals are looking out for you day and night. As most DIY customers would usually opt for professionally monitored systems with addons such as 24/7 life safety and burglary monitoring.

Choose the right tech

There are a lot of different tech options when it comes to smart homes and a key factor in creating a system that works for you is choosing the right tech. Though not as complicated as business security systems, some users may want to incorporate plenty of cameras and video doorbells to monitor for people stopping by the house or check in on family members. Others may want to incorporate smart lighting and motion sensors in different rooms so that family members never have to enter a dark room. And others may want to use thermostats to not only monitor the temperature in the house but also in places like the extra freezer in the garage to ensure that extra food is at the right temperature.

Set up routines for the optimal work environment

Everyone knows that the right environment can make for a more productive day. Smart home technology has evolved to let us create a more ideal home office. Users can create smart home schedules and routines to automate the home and workspace. For example, they can set all home office lights to turn on in the morning just before the start of the workday and turn off at night when it’s time to wrap up and set the ideal temperature for the space.

Take control on the go

When you do have to leave the house, use mobile apps to monitor your home from afar. It is now easier than ever to monitor video feeds from your phone and remote arm or disarm your system as needed. You can even receive instant alerts when someone is on your property or utilize smart lighting features to indicate that someone is home.

Choose a trustworthy provider

Work with a trustworthy provider to protect not only your family and valuables, but also your office technology. In office buildings, security is paramount with monitoring systems, auto lock doors and more so why not ensure your home is acting the same way by using a trustworthy provider to set up your system.

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